tv [untitled] March 16, 2012 11:00pm-11:30pm PDT
>> the planning commission is back in session. you are now want item number 11. this is for 808 brannan street. commissioner sugaya: i have to recuse myself because i have done work with the clients. >> on the motion to recuse commissioner sugaya? the commissioner is recused. >> good afternoon. the case before you is a proposal to convert the existing 45,723 gross square foot building into office space.
this includes parking spaces and a shower. no alterations are proposed for the exterior of the building. the zoning administrator issued a letter this year determining the square footage on the ground floor and mezzanine is eligible for the amnesty program and can be committed as office space. the underlying the zoning allows the basement and second floor to include office space. the zoning administrator grant that exception for the 395 square feet of open space required for the project and therefore is ascribed in the planning code. we received no public comment and recommend approval based on the fact the office space is permitted under the legitimization program and the underlying that the zoning. project represents an allocation of less than 4% of the small-cap office space
currently available in the city. that may increase the numbers of employees in the building and increase economic activity in the neighborhood. the project is consistent with the planning coach and general plan. i am available for any questions you may have. >> project sponsor? >> it good afternoon. i am representing the project sponsor and we are presenting this building in the showplace square district.
i want to thank our planner for his efficiency at great communication skills. the most recent use was office but the last legal use is as a furniture showroom. although a furniture showroom is not what we think of as pr, but the planning department has the policy of calling this typea p e r for industrial use. until the closure in 2010, but the building was found that occupied by giorgio studios, a local clothing designer with several retail stores, including one on union street. this building contained its offices, except for retail overstock of about 1842 square feet. the property went into
foreclosure and our client purchased it from the letter added has been vacant for about 14 months. prior to the rezoning, the office was allowed use of every floor, including the basement in this building. but office is only allowed at the second floor and basement. as a result, our client obtained a letter of legitimization dated february 12, 2012, legitimizing be two levels other than the second floor and basement, but in the ground level and add partial basement above it. that consists of about 22,837 square feet, same as the not- legitimized area. as the zoning is all little confusing, the rest of the
building is not eligible for legitimization, but not because there was no office use of those particular floors. it was because there is a as of right use and it is not a spaceship can legitimize. together, the spaces will add up to about 45,700 square feet and there is no expansion of the building being proposed. the project sponsor is pay a little over five under $30,000 in development fees used to maintain the balance between economic growth, affordable housing and public services in that area.
the ground floor and mezzanine pay into two funds, namely the jobs housing linkage and the development feet. the other went pay into the eastern neighborhoods funds feet. very little office space was created this city during the last five years because of the downturn. according to your department's own records, the about of buildings in this category, close to 50 -- it is now over 1 million square feet because so little of this pool has been used up in the last five years. records show between 2005 and today, only to projects have sought an office allocation in what we call the small cap pool.
the building is 82 years old. it has its our original brick facade. other than a thorough cleaning, there are no changes planned to the original facade. the interior needs a lot of renovation. fire code improvements and improvements to exiting and the like. this will help to extend the useful life of this historic assets. one of the important criteria for approval is the suitability of the proposed office space for its location. it any effects of the proposed office space specific to that
location. we feel office development here is appropriate and much needed in this location. as of the last quarter of last year, the vacancy was of little as 8.65%, down from vacancy rates of 23.6 and 25.5. as to the appropriateness of the location, you have several -- the area has become a big center for new and emerging businesses in the high-tech sector, including adobe, event bright, simple star, and limited technology and the best known is facing death. which it -- the best known is a
zynga. mission bay and the train station blocks away and the presence of four nearby muni lines, a few workers will have to commute the a car. the building provides the kind of open floor space that allows occupants to view each other through the floors. a very important quality for collaboration and communication. the interior provide a very high ceilings and other collaborative work space. this building has been looked at seriously by several high- tech companies considering coming to the city or existing businesses expanding and it is difficult to actually find in the south of market area with buildings with as much as 25,000
and up square feet. these are in great demand. finally, i would like to thank cori and i'm available for any questions you may have. president fong: is there any public comment? >> of good afternoon, commissioners. i am speaking for san franciscans for reasonable growth, the authors of the law under which you are administering this hearing. this project is going to be very lucrative for its developer. there is a high demand for this. this is just about the highest office space rent you get according to newspapers.
what has happened, however, is they have delayed requesting a change of views which was absolutely legal from all points when the area was zoned. day never filed to legitimize the conversion. he admits this has been an office headquarters since 1986. what was the law in 1986 was a transit the and a housing t. and an office allocation. by sitting on this for a link the time, the developer is using a provision put in place because there were some uses springing out of compliance and they get all lot of reduced fees.
the table here on page 2 of the staff report does not pull out how much is being legitimized and how much is office allocation. this is all of the fees they are paying. what is the amount that would have to be paid if this had been done properly? pre 2008. what was the office the and transit feet. dave would not have had to pay the eastern neighbor it the. those would be much higher. this area does not have any parking and it has a very uneven transit uses. you always use transit blocks and they are in the state -- they are irrelevant. the distance should be measured in feet. how much are they cheating us out of housing?
we do need transit feet to add a new transit. the open space is being compromised. even though the need is stated as being very high. there is a policy issue here. i am hoping the zoning administrator is watching this and he has the responsibility to propose a corrective measures. one of the corrective measures as we should not be encouraging people to wait around to pay reduced fees and then sit on them for another five years. it is wrong for housing and transit. >> is there any other public comment?
>> they can do what they want with their property as long as it is legal and i see that this is legal. this is an area if you are talking about housing, i mentioned in the comments the projects in the direct area and we keep wanting to put housing and jobs in the same place. to my mind, that is exactly what this is doing. we've got those large projects of housing and if we authorize this, you will be putting jobs in the exact location. i would move to authorize the allocation of office space. >> second.
commissioner antonini: i think there were some points made it but we're talking about the zoning today which probably would have been m-1 but anything was allowed and even know it was used as office, it was a permitted use. there was no reason for anyone to go through legalization at that time, but now they are in their and paying some significant fees to do this and i think it's going to be a great project so i am totally in favor of it. >> the motion on the floor is for approval. on that motion -- >> [roll-call] the motion passes unanimously. commissioners, you are now on
item number 12, 31-33 my york away. -- 31-33 mallorca way. there has to be a staff report first. >> good afternoon, commissioners. i'm david lindsay from department staff. this is a request for discretionary review of the project at 31-33 mallorca way in the marina district. this is a building on the west side between chestnut and toledo. the project has two components. the first is a vertical addition in the form of a partial fourth story set back 15 feet from the
main front building wall and that back approximately 10 feet from the main rear building wall. the addition would extend a five and half feet above the existing parapet. the second component is the replacement of stairs constructed without a permit and the light well at the south property line. the steel will stairs replace the original wooden staircase and occupy a larger footprint than the original staircase. the current project will replace it with other steel staircase comparable to the original wood staircase. the steel construction allows the well to remain open in the adjacent property owned by the request for which contains stairs. in terms of setting be adjacent properties on both sides contained three story buildings,
the subject and office space is include a varied mix of three story and for story buildings. some are set back, others are not. before discussing the request, i will mention that subsequent to this being set out last week, the department received a letter from a neighbor at 19 who opposes the project due to anticipated disruption from the project's construction. i will pass along copies of the letter to the commission. that department also received an e-mail from a neighbor whose concern includes the potential effect on some light, traffic
and parking. i will pass along copies of his e-mail. at the dr request first are owners of the building immediately to the south of the subject property. the request first property have matching white wells opened to what another at the shared property line. each contains a share case -- staircase connecting the building to the top floor. each one measures about 5 feet and the shared space is over 10 feet in width. the concerns include the size of stairs built without a permit
and the impact on the light in the light well as well as impact at the floor on of the sky view and privacy. the request jurors for pope -- oppose the use of the light well stairs. although they support the reduction of a staircase to the footprint of the original staircase, a request sound dampening mats be installed on the stairs and request the project sponsor rep provide a skylight and kitchen window box to compensate for loss of light or that the vertical addition be set back from the well so as to not block the light. the project was reviewed by the design team which determine the project does not detain or create any exceptional circumstances. the project maintains the
situation and replaces the stairs constructed in a larger format with a new staircase and footprints similar to the stairs. and the related noise issues are not within the purview of the planning department. in terms of the four story addition, i would mention it is 5.5 p -- 5.5 feet higher and situated next to the request for his property. we recommend you not take the dr and approve the project as proposed. >> you have five minutes. >> my name is chris hawkins and i live at adjacent to the property. could you pull the microphone up and speak right into it?
>> i've lived at the property for 15 years and i was close friends with the former property owner who was an elderly gentleman. i'm very familiar with the property. i was initially excited about the remodeling going on next door. it seemed like it was a great idea and a good thing for the neighborhood. i think it's a good design and better than what was there before. our problem began with this stairwell that was here before. the extraordinary circumstances of why we are asking for this now as we endured a year of construction which is acceptable, but from the year after that, because of the legal design of the stairwell and what i believe is an illegal design of the hallway that has not been addressed by the planning department although i have mentioned as a number of times, i believe they have converted the back fire escape into a
completely different traffic flow to the building. this has been our primary problem with this entire thing. we were trying to negotiate with the owners of the property and the architect and we had requested direct communication with the owners but the architect insisted on being the direct point of contact. we sent a number of females. we complained about the stairwell immediately and that it was only after i went to the planning department that i realized they had falsified or drawn in on the original plans the proposed size of the stairwell to look like it was existing before where it was not. there is an interesting drawing with the plans that were submitted that does not seem to be up front. the response that there was no other alternative is also not
true. we endured a lot of noise going up the stairwell. the windows are not double paint. the stairwell is used as emptying garbage and the occasional use but it is not intended to be a primary source of access to the building. in addition, the tenant would frequently come home at 2:00 in the morning and banged up the metal stair well. there are a number of complaints about this particular thing. i am glad they have been required to change the stairwell. in addition to that, we are concerned about the loss of light even know they have shown extensive drawing and design. we hope to communicate directly with the owner and had a deal we thought would be acceptable. we were told they were unacceptable and so we felt we
had no choice but to file this dr. i had a conversation with him and he asked why we did not contact him but we were only able to work through the architect. we could have reached an understanding before coming in front of the but at this point after all the time and effort it has taken to go through this, the second year of noise disturbances from the legal stairwell, we don't want more additional construction or disturbances. we are concerned about the loss of view of this guy a and the loss of light. we definitely perceive additional difficulty from this. we acknowledge their there able to improve their property as they wish and i can appreciate that. after all the difficulty they put us through, we have reached the end of our rope and we do not want this to go through.
in the hallway, we proposed an alternative where they could set back the wings on the side where the light will is. if they pushed those back to be equal, that would be a reasonable compromise. we're not entirely opposed to the fourth floor addition. we would like to see a redesign. thank you for your time and we appreciate your help. >> if there are any speakers in support of the dr? >> the afternoon. i live on the second floor of the unit that shares the stairwell. -- good afternoon. i share the same sentiments as mr. hawkins. i believe the construction of the fourth floor will contain more noise within our light
well. now, i can see blue sky and i will not be able to with that. any noise that occurs in -- will be reflected further into our weekend. i am an aniston geologist -- an anesthesiologist. it is extremely annoying. and has been a problem. i talked to the architect about noise dampers on the stairs. they install the different better system. it is extremely loud and will keep you all night. i am willing to talk to them about changing the design.
they said it would put some noise rimini's there which has never happened. thank you. >> are there any other speakers in support of the dr? >> good afternoon. i am the -- >> we are hearing speakers in support of the d.r. >> i am connie hawkins. we repeatedly tried to contact the owners. i have multiple demerit -- e- mails. we're more than happy to work with them to redesign the top unit. we understand they have set it back from the front and back
which is within the limitations. we would like to see them produced -- reduce the wings that hang over the light well. and also, we appreciate the fact they are willing to change the stairs which were put in illegally to start with. >> any additional speakers in support of the d.r.? project sponsor, you have five minutes. >> good afternoon. >> state your name for that set -- the record. >> in the immediate vicinity of the addition, there